State Botanical Garden of Georgia
Discover 313 acres (126 hectares) of natural beauty at the State Botanical Gardens of Georgia, one of Athens most visited attractions. Wander along curving woodland walking trails and see displays of tropical and semitropical plants in the garden’s impressive conservatory. Look for wildlife as you explore the garden’s nature trails, and learn more about various threatened and rare plant species.
Begin your visit at the Alice Hand Callaway Visitor Center and Conservatory, a striking three-story glass structure which serves as the garden’s centerpiece. This beautiful conservatory overlooking the International Garden often hosts lectures, concerts, art exhibitions and other special events.
Consider signing up for a guided tour. First time visitors should try the Garden Sampler Tour, which highlights the garden’s largest exhibits: The Conservatory, the Heritage Garden and the International Garden. Alternatively, explore the garden independently, allowing the informative signs found throughout to provide the context.
Take your time exploring the array of specialty gardens. Step back in time as you walk through the Heritage Garden, which displays plants of historic significance. Look for magnolias and azaleas in the spring and citrus fruits and confederate roses in the autumn. Learn about the geographic origins of various plants in the International Garden.
Explore more than 5 miles (8 kilometers) of shady nature trails and look for wildlife such as deer, Barred owls and raccoons. From May to October, follow the Hummingbird Trail, which features 20 markers that indicate where hummingbirds can be spotted when they’re active.
Head to the upper level of the conservatory to get a delicious homemade snack or beverage at Donderos’ Kitchen. Ask to borrow a picnic basket and enjoy your meal outside in the garden. Stop by the Garden Gift Shop at the end of your visit to purchase a plant, locally made souvenir or educational toy.
The State Botanical Garden of Georgia is situated 3 miles (5 kilometers) from the University of Georgia campus. The garden is open daily throughout the year except on university holidays. Note that the Visitor’s Center and Garden Gift Shop are closed on Mondays. Admission to the garden is free, but donations are accepted. Free parking is available on-site.